School Lunch For Kids: 100 Best Lunch Ideas Kids Will Actually Eat (+Free Lunch Planner Printable)

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Are you looking for some inspiration for easy and healthy packed school lunch for kids? Here are over 100 combinations of delicious ideas that’ll make assembling school lunches quick and frustration free.

Related: 100 Clever Questions To Ask Kids To Get Them Talking About School {+ Free Printable After School Question Jar Kit}

100 days of healthy school lunch ideas for kids

School Lunch For Kids

If you are looking for inspiration for easy, healthy and delicious packed school school lunch for kids then you are going to love this post.

We’ve created a free printable lunch checklist that will help you assemble school lunch for kids without any stress. We created this free printable packed lunch planner because we know how frustrating it is to come up with ideas for school lunch on a daily basis.

Using this printable packed lunch planner will help you prepare meals in advance and stop worrying about what to pack for lunch. Our mix and match approach to packed school lunch for kids makes lunch prep easy and fuss free.

Our printable packed lunch planner is completely free to use! All you’ll have to do is download it and print it out (More about that at the bottom of this post). You can hang it on your fridge for easy access to make meal planning for your kids lunch a breeze.

Continue reading to download your own copy of our free printable lunch planner, as well as get 100 days of packed lunch inspiration for kids.

What Is A Good Lunch For School?

school lunch for kids

A good packed lunch for kids includes a variety of food groups to ensure that children are receiving all their essential nutrients throughout the day. Packed school lunches should be nutritious and vary a little from one day to the another to keep things interesting.

In addition, a good school lunch for kids will be simple for children to consume, require no fussing or assembly, and keep your child full and happy until snack time.

What To Pack In a Child’s School Lunch?

school lunch ideas for kids

The options for school lunches are endless. However, some types of food make better choices than others for kids.

Packed lunches for kids should include foods that are easily consumed. A few examples of this include sandwiches, wraps, pinwheels or burritos; finger snacks like cut fruit or raw veggies with hummus; and a drink (milk, water) because they are low mess and easy to eat and require no prep or assembly.

A packed lunch should respect the Healthy Eating Pyramid and include options from each of the following food groups:

  • Fruits and vegetables;
  • Grains;
  • Proteins (meat, eggs, beans);
  • Dairy (milk, cheese, yogurt);
  • Healthy Fat (avocado, olive oil).

A school lunch for kids should also include food that your child likes to eat! If you notice that your child doesn’t like cut fruit then don’t make them eat it. It’s simply not worth the stress and aggravation!

There are plenty of alternatives that you can pack for school lunches that still adhere to the Healthy Eating Pyramid.

We created the free lunch planner to make quick lunches that provide variety and convenient alternatives for picky eaters. Our free printable lunch planner includes a wide range of healthy choices, so you’re sure to find something your child will like.

School Lunch Ideas For Picky Eaters

Most children are picky eaters at one point or another. Packing a lunch can be daunting if your child is an extremely picky eater. Involving children in the lunch packing process is a great way to ensure that they have a say in what they eat and take the opportunity to encourage them to try new things.

It is also a good idea to pack food that you know your child likes and leave out less familiar options like cut fruit in a separate container in their lunch box. This way, if they don’t feel like trying something new they will still have some of their favorites too fall back on.

Avoid packing foods that your child dislikes and try to include foods that they like as much as possible (without compromising nutrition).

Our printable packed lunch planner will provide you with dozens of food combinations that will keep your child’s taste buds happy and his or her belly full.

Here are some ideas for packing school lunches for kids who are very reluctant to try new things:

#1 You don’t have to pack something different for each day of the month! You can repeat meals you already know they like. There’s nothing wrong with packing the same things if you know they’ll eat it and its healthy.

#2 If your child is a bit older, then talk to them about the importance of trying new things and provide some healthy alternatives that are low hassle!

How can I avoid wasting food when packing lunches?

Reducing food waste is an extremely important part of packing school lunches, and there are several things you can do to make sure that your child (and the environment) doesn’t end up with too many leftovers!

Here are some of our favorite strategies to prevent food waste when packing school lunches:

#1 When packing sandwiches, wraps, pinwheels or burritos, don’t forget to leave out sauces like mayo, ketchup or mustard. These condiments can make a tasty sandwich, but they can also turn your child’s lunch into soggy mess that they wont want to eat when lunch time rolls around.

#2 Pack only the food your child will eat! This may be difficult if your child can’t stand anything new, but it’s necessary to reduce the amount of leftover, untouched food that goes into the trash at home or at school.

#3 Pack simple meals that you know they will eat. There’s no need to stress about how many portions of each food group are in your child’s packed lunch. What matters is that they’re eating a balanced meal – even if it’s simple.

#4 Repackage any foods that have been unused throughout the week is another great way to reduce food waste. Instead of packing your child’s lunchbox with fresh, new ingredients every day, repackage food that is still save to consume and that haven’t been used to avoid wasting food unnecessarily.

What are the benefits of packing your child’s lunch?

Packing lunches at home provides numerous benefits for the entire family, the environment and your child’s health! In addition to making sure that you can control exactly what is going into your child’s lunch, it will allow him or her to eat a more nutritious meal at school.

It also helps provide a better understanding of what they should and shouldn’t be eating. Packing lunches is especially beneficial for parents who want their children to eat nutritious foods, but struggle with their picky eating habits.

When you pack your child’s lunch, the entire family benefits too! It saves time, money and provides a healthy way to encourage your children toward healthier habits that will benefit them for the rest of their lives.

Free Printable Organizer For School Lunch For Kids

Our free printable planner for school lunch for kids is simple to use. The planner uses a mix and match system that allows you to create a wide variety of school lunch for kids that your child will enjoy.

The concept is straightforward: pick a main (protein or hot lunch idea) and add a starch, side and fruits & vegetables to round out the meal.

Each category has a large variety of different options that you can mix and match to create a lunch that your child will love!

Continue reading to learn how we used our free printable planner for school lunches for kids to come up with 100 combinations that most kids will actually want to eat.

Skip to the bottom of this post to get your free printable planner for school lunch for kids.

Click here to PIN these ideas for school lunch for kids to Pinterest.

100 Days Of Healthy & Easy School Lunch Ideas For Kids

Create your own lunch by combining 1 protein, 1 starch, and 1 side from our free printable school lunches list. Here are 100 different combinations to get you started!

The following are lunch combinations only; they do not include recess snacks. Increase the quantity of food based on how many snack breaks your kid has during the day.

school lunch ideas for kids

School Lunch Ideas Day 1-9

Day 1: Pita + Deli Meat + Fruit Salad
Day 2: Bread + Pepperoni + Vegetables and Dip
Day 2: Crackers + Egg Salad + Fruit Smoothie
Day 3: Tortilla + Hummus + Yogurt
Day 4: Couscous + Chickpeas + Dried Fruit
Day 5: Pasta + Beans + Vegetables and Dip
Day 6: Pancake + Eggs + Fruit Salad
Day 7: Waffle + Eggs + Yogurt
Day 8: Bagel + Cream Cheese + Dried Fruit
Day 9: Rice + Beans + Chips and Guacamole

Click here to save these combinations of school lunch for kids to Pinterest.
school lunch ideas for kids

School Lunch Ideas Day 10-19

Day 10: Quinoa + Fish Sticks + String Cheese
Day 11: Pita + Tuna + Vegetables and Dip
Day 12: Bread + Cheese + Dried Fruit
Day 13: Tortilla + Grilled Chicken + Yogurt
Day 14: Crackers + Pepperoni + Olives
Day 15: Pancake + Cottage Cheese +Fruit Salad
Day 16: Waffle + Chick Peas + String Cheese
Day 17: Bagel + Deli Meat + Yogurt
Day 18: Rice + String Cheese + Dried Fruit
Day 19: Couscous + Grilled Chicken + fruit salad

Click here to save these combinations of school lunch for kids to Pinterest. 
school lunch ideas for kids

School Lunch Ideas Day 20-29

Day 20: Pita + Grilled Chicken + Yogurt
Day 21: Grilled Cheese Sandwich + Vegetables and Dip
Day 22: Tortilla + Deli Meat + Yogurt
Day 23: Crackers + Bean Dip + String Cheese
Day 24: Pancake + Grilled Chicken + Fruit Salad
Day 25: Waffle + Fish Sticks + Smoothie
Day 26: Bagel + Smashed Chick Peas + Fruit Salad
Day 27: Rice + Boiled Egg + String Cheese
Day 28: Couscous + Turkey Roll Up + Dried Fruit
Day 29: Quinoa + Chick Peas + Yogurt

Click here to save these combinations of school lunch for kids to Pinterest. 
school lunch ideas for kids

School Lunch Ideas Day 30-39

Day 30: Pasta + Cottage Cheese + Olives
Day 31: Pita + Fish Sticks + Smoothie
Day 32: Tortilla + Scrambled Eggs + String Cheese
Day 33: Crackers + Cottage Cheese + Fruit Salad
Day 34: Pancake + Chick Peas + Popcorn
Day 35: Waffle + Deli Meat + Pretzels
Day 36: Bagel + String Cheese + Fruit Salad
Day 37: Rice + Hummus + Vegetable and Dip
Day 38: Couscous + Pepperoni + Yogurt
Day 39: Quinoa + Laughing Cow + Olives

Click here to save these combinations of school lunch for kids to Pinterest. 
school lunch ideas for kids

School Lunch Ideas Day 40-49

Day 40: Pasta + Cheese + Fruit Salad
Day 41: Pita + Pepperoni + Vegetables and Dip
Day 42: Tortilla Chips + Egg Salad + String Cheese
Day 43: Crackers + Deli Chicken + Fruit Salad
Day 44: Pancake + Chicken Fingers + pretzels
Day 45: Waffle + Cubed Cheese + Olives
Day 46: Bagel + Cheese Spread + Dried Fruit
Day 47: Rice + Chick Peas + Guacamole
Day 48: Couscous + Boiled Egg + Yogurt
Day 49: Quinoa + String Cheese + Fruit Salad

Click here to save these combinations of school lunch for kids to Pinterest. 
school lunch ideas for kids

School Lunch Ideas Day 50-59

Day 50: Pita + Hummus + Yogurt
Day 51: Bread + Deli Meat + Smoothie
Day 52: Tortilla + Cheese + Fruit Salad
Day 53: Crackers + Hummus + Dried Fruit
Day 54: Pancake + Pepperoni + Olives
Day 55: Waffle + Beans + String Cheese
Day 56: Bagel + Pepperoni + Yogurt
Day 57: Rice + Fish Sticks + Vegetables and Dip
Day 58: Couscous + Hummus + String Cheese
Day 59: Quinoa + Eggs + Yogurt

Click here to save these combinations of school lunch for kids to Pinterest. 
school lunch ideas for kids

School Lunch Ideas Day 60-69

Day 60: Pasta + Pepperoni + Smoothie
Day 61: Pita + Eggs + String Cheese
Day 62: Bread + Tuna + Dried Fruit
Day 63: Tortilla + Fish + Olives
Day 64: Crackers + Grilled Chicken + String cheese
Day 65: Pancake + Cheese + Fruit Salad
Day 66: Waffle + Hummus + Dried Fruit
Day 67: Bagel + Smoked Salmon + Yogurt
Day 68: Rice + Grilled Chicken + Olives
Day 69: Couscous + Boiled Egg + String Cheese

Click here to save these combinations of school lunch for kids to Pinterest. 
school lunch ideas for kids

School Lunch Ideas Day 70-79

Day 70: Pasta + Chick Peas + Vegetables and Dip
Day 71: Pita + Beans + String Cheese
Day 72: Rice + Fish Sticks + Fruit Salad
Day 73: Waffle + Cottage Cheese + Smoothie
Day 74: Couscous + Beans + Yogurt
Day 75: Pasta + Grilled Chicken + Dried Fruit
Day 76: Pancake + Beans + Olives
Day 77: Pasta + Fish + String Cheese
Day 78: Crackers + Chick Peas + Yogurt
Day 79: Pita + Cottage Cheese + Dried Fruit

Click here to save these combinations of school lunch for kids to Pinterest.
school lunch ideas for kids

School Lunch Ideas Day 80-89

Day 80: Bread + Tuna Fish + String Cheese
Day 81: Pasta + Eggs + Smoothie
Day 82: Tortilla + Beans + Guacamole
Day 83: Crackers + Fish Sticks + Vegetables and Dip
Day 84: Couscous + Fish Sticks + Fruit Salad
Day 85: Waffle + Pepperoni + String Cheese
Day 86: Rice + Deli Meat + Olives
Day 87: Pasta + Hummus + Pretzels
Day 88: Pancake + Deli Meat + Vegetables and Dip
Day 89: Tortilla + Chick Peas + Yogurt

Click here to save these combinations of school lunch for kids to Pinterest. 
school lunch ideas for kids

School Lunch Ideas Day 90-100

Day 90: Bread + Smoked Salmon + Smoothie
Day 91: Pita + Chick Peas + String Cheese
Day 92: Bagel + Grilled Chicken + Vegetables and Dip
Day 93: Crackers + Beans + Guacamole
Day 94: Pancake + Turkey Bacon + Olives
Day 95: Pasta + Fish Sticks + Dried Fruit
Day 96: Tortilla + Pepperoni + String Cheese
Day 97: Pita + Boiled Egg + Fruit Salad
Day 98: Rice + Pepperoni + Yogurt
Day 99: Waffle + Grilled Chicken + Smoothie
Day 100: Quinoa + Hummus + Fruit Salad

Click here to save these combinations of school lunch for kids to Pinterest. 

Download & Print Instructions

Click here to download our free printable planner for kids school lunches in pdf.

Once the download is complete open and print!

Even More Neat Ideas For Kids:

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